It may be hot this season, but the long summer days have got us ready to enjoy dinner on the patio at Tuscaloosa’s most popular restaurants. Check out our recommendations to enjoy an al fresco breakfast, lunch, or dinner, Tuscaloosa style.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day for a reason. It’s what a body starts off with and what gives it energy. Some believe breakfast is in a league all its own, while others only save breakfast for the weekends. Which ever way you swing, we’ve listed the best breakfasts in the area to satisfy every stomach. 

 

With warmer days approaching, the greater outdoors serve many purposes. Fishing, swimming and hiking are just a few, but the best places are those with prime picnicking real estate.

Have you ever been to a vacation spot so fast and so beautiful, that you wish it were your home? That’s how I feel anytime I stay along the stunning Gulf Coast. From the shores of Mississippi to the vast, emerald waters of the Florida Panhandle, to the sugar white sands of the Alabama Gulf Coast, the area offers numerous vacation spots boasting genuine, natural beauty.

By Chloe P. Ballard

 

If you are looking for some family friendly things to do in Alabama this summer, here are a few really great options that your whole family will enjoy!

 

Children's Hands-On Museum

Learning through play is great fun, and it's particularly fun at Tuscaloosa's Children's Hands-On Museum (CHOM). CHOM also stands for "Children Explore, Create and Discover" - because that's exactly what they do, each time they visit this downtown wonderland. This three-story museum features two dozen different exhibits designed to appeal to children of all ages, from newborns to 13-year-olds. And, unlike many museums, CHOM encourages kids to touch things, allowing their curiosity to blossom.

 

Alabama Cave System

 

Do you know the difference between stalactites and stalagmites? Well, you will surely learn the difference after visiting any of Alabama’s caves. The caves have a rich history of being used for various activities, and there have been over 4,200 caves discovered across Alabama. Many of these natural wonders are open to the public and are used to precipitate education about subterranean structures and life forms. Great for families, cave exploration is fascinating and will surely enrich both children and parents.

 

Helen Keller’s Birthplace

 

Great for families and school groups, Helen Keller’s birthplace at Ivy Green is an educational opportunity for all ages. The home, built in 1820, is available for tours. Tuscumbia’s historic Spring Park is the location of the annual Helen Keller Festival, where children can learn about the early life of Helen Keller. While visiting Tuscumbia, check out the Frank Lloyd Wright Rosenbaum House, Indian Mound & Museum, and the Alabama Music Hall of Fame.

 

Rosa Parks Museum Children’s Wing

 

Children learn about how one amazing woman made a difference in this world in 1955. And on the Rosa Parks Museum Children’s Wing tour, children learn that they too can make a difference by standing up for what they believe to be right. While visiting Montgomery, stop by the State Capitol, the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts, the Montgomery Zoo, and the Alabama Shakespeare Festival.

 

Gulf Coast Science Center

 

Design your own roller coaster, play a laser harp, and hold a holographic heart in your hand at the Gulf Coast Exploreum Science Center! The current visiting exhibit is the “Great Dinosaur Egg Hunt” which is an exceptional collection of dinosaur nests and eggs many of which have been featured in National Geographic magazine. The exhibit features, life-like models of dinosaur embryos, Tyrannosaurid bone replicas for touching, and a leg bone puzzle, to name a few things. Afterward, consider walking in Bellingrath Gardens to enjoy its 65-acres of beauty. Kids will enjoy the butterfly garden and parents will enjoy the beautiful scenery. Also visit Alabama’s Pecan Festival, Hank Aaron’s Childhood Home and Museum, and the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo.

It’s hard to miss when an Alabama summer hits. Children are out of school, swimming pools are open, and humidity is at an all time high. While the best summer events are up for debate for anybody, we’ve highlighted some happenings that are enjoyable for a range of Alabamians. Enjoy!

 

By Laurie Mundy Perrigin

Who doesn’t love a great food festival? Fortunately for those of us who live in Alabama, we’ve got a ton of great ones to enjoy. These are some of my favorites – though it can be tough to choose. From barbecue in Huntsville and Birmingham to excellent food and wine in T-Town (and beyond), mark your calendars and prepare to be amazed.

Farm-to-Table restaurants have become huge across the U.S in recent years, and in Alabama, it is not different. Here are five great farm-to-table restaurants to check out statewide. 

 Spring has sprung and May is just around the corner. While children are getting out of school and pollen counts skyrocket, the music festival scene emerges in the background. Check out some of these local festivals to get your music fix as summer approaches.

If you’re planning the perfect spring dinner at your house this year, I’ve got a recipe for you: the best ham ever. I’m serious, the orange slices and the Coke and the mustard just give this ham the most incredible flavor. You’ll be glad you made this one – and your guests will too.

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Druid City Living (DCL) is Tuscaloosa, Alabama's premier community newspaper, covering the great people, places and activities of the area.

 

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